Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
(Ruby Spaniel) (Blenheim Spaniel)
Named for King Charles II, the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is
descended from the King Charles Spaniel. In the late 1600's the
King Charles Spaniels were interbred with Pugs, which resulted in
a smaller dog with flatter noses, upturned faces, rounded heads
and protruding eyes. The consequence of this breeding is what we
know today as the English Toy Spaniel.
In the 1920's an American named Roswell Eldridge, offered prize
money during a Cruft's Dog Show in London, to any person exhibiting
King Charles Spaniels with long noses. He was looking for dogs similar
to those appearing in Van Dyck's paintings of King Charles II and
his spaniels, before the Pug was bred in. A dog called Ann's Son,
owned by Miss Mostyn Walker, won the Eldridge prize, however Eldridge,
had died a month before the show opened and was not there to present
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel breed, as we know it today is
the true heir of the royal spaniels of King Charles II. By the 1940's
these dogs were classified as a separate breed and were given the
prefix Cavalier, to differentiate them from their forebears.
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a well-proportioned little
dog. The head is slightly rounded, the muzzle full, tapering a little
with a shallow stop. The nose is black. The teeth meet in a scissors
bite. The dark brown eyes are round and set well apart with dark
eye rims. The long ears are set-high with abundant feathering. The
top line is level. The tail is sometimes docked by 1/3 but is usually
left natural. Dewclaws may be removed. The silky coat is medium
in length with feathering on the ears, chest, legs and the tail.
Colours include prince Charles (tricolour), ruby (rich mahogany
red), king Charles (black and tan) and Blenheim (red and white).
Blenheim dogs, a chestnut-red spot on top of the head between the
ears is preferred by breeders, but not critical..
The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is an eager, affectionate and
happy dog always seeming to be wagging their tails. Outgoing and
sportive these fearless lively little dogs are eager and willing
to please. They are intelligent enough to understand what you want
and therefore are usually easy to train and respond well to gentle
They are said to be naturally well behaved and get along well with
other dogs and house hold pets. Cavalier's love people, enjoy companionship,
and need rules to follow and limits to what they are allowed to
do. They are not suited to kennel life and should not be left alone
all day. If you do need to leave them, be sure to take them for
a long walk before you leave to put them in a natural rest mode.
Due to their hunting background they have an instinct to chase.
Do not allow this sweet dog to develop human induced behaviours,
where the dog thinks he is the alpha to the humans. This can cause
a varying degree of issues and related behavioural problems which
are not Cavalier traits, but behaviours brought on by the way they
are being treated.
They are recommended with older considerate children; simply because
most small dogs are treated in such a way they start to believe
they rule the home. In addition to being the dog's leader, introduce
them to other dogs and people to avoid them being reserved with
strangers. The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a pleasant companion
dog. They have remarkable eyes sight and sense of smell and can
be used in short hunts in open country. They do well in competitive
Height: 30-33 cm.
Weight: 5-8 kg.
Prone to syringomyelia, hereditary eye disease, dislocating kneecaps
(patella), back troubles, ear infections, early onset of deafness
or hearing trouble. Sometimes hip dysplasia. Don't over feed. This
breed tends to gain weight easily. Also prone to mitral valve disease,
a serious genetic heart problem, which can cause early death. It
is wise to check the medical history of several previous generations
before choosing your puppy.
Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are good for small dwellings and
people living in flats. They are moderately active indoors .The
Cavalier does not do well in very warm conditions.
Cavalier King Charles Spaniels need at least one good walk a day.
Play will take care of a lot of their exercise needs however as
with all breeds play will not fulfil their primal instinct to walk.
Dogs that do not get to go on daily walks are more likely to display
behaviour problems. They will also enjoy a good romp in a safe open
area off lead.
About 9-14 years.
Comb or brush with a firm bristle brush, and bathe or dry shampoo
as necessary. The hair between the pads on the feet need to be trimmed.
Prone to tangling and matting on the ears, and should be brushed
often. Clean the inside of the ears regularly. Always make sure
the dog is thoroughly dry and warm after a bath. Check the eyes
carefully for any signs of infection. This breed moults.